Perlman and Taylor show how string band music is done

Bobby Taylor

Bobby Taylor

For MTSU Scholars Week 2017, The Center for Popular Music sponsored a free public concert featuring Ken Perlman and Bobby Taylor on March 27. The two acclaimed masters of traditional string band music performed in the State Farm Room in the Business and Aerospace building and shared their profound knowledge of America’s rich string band traditions with the audience.

Perlman is one of the greatest living exponents of “melodic clawhammer” banjo. Along with his music teaching, banjo-camp instruction, performances and recordings, Perlman is an active folklorist and author who collected tunes and oral histories for “The Fiddle Music of Prince Edward Island,” a two-CD anthology called “The Prince Edward Island Style of Fiddling,” and an ethnography, “Couldn’t Have a Wedding Without the Fiddler: the Story of Traditional Fiddling on Prince Edward Island.”

Bobby Taylor is a fourth-generation West Virginia fiddler who learned from some of that region’s legendary masters. He coordinates contests at renowned events including the Appalachian String Band Music Festival and also serves as contest judge for multiple state and national championships, teaches fiddle workshops and presents historical showcases on fiddle styles with his band, “Kanawha Tradition.”

Ken Perlman

Ken Perlman

Together, these two accomplished scholar-musicians played old-time banjo and fiddle duets influenced by Celtic, Scottish and Applachia folk tunes.

The Center for Popular Music, one of the nation’s largest and richest repositories of research materials related to American vernacular music, is part of MTSU’s College of Media and Entertainment. For more information on The Center for Popular Music and its projects and special events, click here.

To see a video of Perlman and Taylor’s performance, click here.

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Categories: Events, News

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